Mr. Scott Lee Cohen, do you want to get back at the media? Step down during the Super Bowl

February 7, 2010

I can't find record of Lt. Governor candidate Scott Lee Cohen actually partying at the Vertigo inside the Dana Hotel on Friday night. According to most Chicago news outlets, they staked out the club at the time he was supposed to arrive (9pm) and he never showed up. I'm sure that sat well with the media.
If I were Cohen, here would be my follow-up. Announce you are stepping-down (if you intend to do so) today. Let's say you were a candidate for statewide office. And you put your own money into the campaign and on election day, your hard work and message paid off in a primary victory. The first 24 hours was bliss. You accomplished your goal. Then you wake up the next day, put on your slippers and roll to the end of the driveway to find your past splashed on both mainstream newspapers. The same information that you tried to give to them months before but they weren't interested. So your bliss turns to a raging stomach ache and you are now being accosted left and right by every news organization, blog and Facebook page in town.‚  I would bet you would be angry. You would have swirling questions about the media's role and if they were tipped off by your adversaries. Did the media hold the information until you won your primary for better ratings? Were there backroom dealings with reporters, sources and politicians? If those conspiracy theories didn't tie your stomach in knots, then your fellow politicians grandstanding, asking for you to step-down for the good of the party probably took you straight to the Pepto. You huddle with your team. You make a decision on what you are going to do. The media is only beginning their quest for a scoop, interviewing everyone in your life, including your ex-wife and children. They've found your former girlfriend. She is questioning your character too. Do you fight it out and hope this bowls over? Or do you resign? Leaks and rumors swirl that you are stepping-down, just waiting for the right time. If this is the case, and if you are a fighting man, you will go down swinging. Now Mr. Cohen, you didn't hear this from me, okay? If you are going to resign, do it today. Do it on Sunday, say around...I don't know...um...5:30pm? If you are looking for a way to get back at the media one last time before you leave the race and maybe politics for good, this could be it. Make the political press corps in town leave their Super Bowl plans and have to work through the game. Not to mention the fact that it will be front page news without people watching. And last I checked, that's how good politicians work. Late Fridays or over weekends is when you break big news. People just aren't paying attention. Mr. Cohen, I implore you to do the right thing and step-down...today. Not because I care one way or another if you are the democratic candidate for Lt. Gov, but because you deserve a counter-punch. And frankly, I love drama. I will be miffed at you because I will have to work, which will probably get in the way of my Super Bowl plans. Between you and me? I was looking for an excuse to leave the party anyway.
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